R.I.P. Hugo Awards

(nonsensical, counterfactual, hate-filled) Eulogy via bongbong:

This year’s Hugo Award winners have been announced, and the prizes overwhelmingly went to brilliant women like NK Jemisin and Seanan McGuire, to the eminent satisfaction of all those who saw the right-wing, misogynist, racist campaign to make science fiction inhospitable to brown people and women, took countermeasures, and for two years in a row, demonstrated the field’s inclusiveness and commitment to quality, rather than pandering to reactionary panic over the prospect of a future that breaks with the shameful past.

The slow death of Garrett P.I.

Anticipating some downtime during my recent vacation (stopping for lunch on the road to Vegas, waiting for the folks to show up a few days later, etc), I decided to catch up on Glen Cook’s Garrett novels, which I’d left off around book 9. I quickly reread those before starting the next five.

I think I should have stopped after book 11. I definitely should have stopped before book 14. Angry Lead Skies (10) and Whispering Nickel Idols (11) are “Garrett Lite”, suffering mostly from a lack of good plot ideas. Good for revisiting the setting and the characters, but a big step down from the earlier books.

Taken together, Cruel Zinc Melodies (12), Gilded Latten Bones (13), and Wicked Bronze Ambition (14) feel like a contractual-obligation trilogy designed to put an end to the series forever, with little regard for dangling plot threads and series continuity. I’m honestly surprised that he didn’t finish off the Dead Man to drive the final nail into the coffin.

The last one is the worst. I can’t decide who was doing more sleepwalking, Garrett or Cook. Lots of continuity and character errors, and in a series that’s always been built around Western fantasy tropes, suddenly we have a character named Hagekagome, and Garrett is glibly tossing off terms like shinagami and shinobi, and demonstrating a familiarity with Japanese folklore. Utter crap.

Jerry Pournelle, RIP

It is reported that Jerry Pournelle has passed.

Dark Matter catchup

I don’t have a lot to say about how the story is going, except that this week’s episode had a nice flashback to when Four wasn’t King Of The Assholes, but I want to praise Zoie Palmer for making Android the most reliably entertaining character in the show, and Anthony Lemke for making Three the most believable.

Bonus points for Palmer’s dual role this week.

Gendering The Doctor

A bit belatedly, it occurs to me that there’s no one to react to the results of this new regeneration. Unless they bring back a human(ish) character from a previous season, no one who encounters the new Doctor will have a reason to notice, much less care.

Ms. Doctor

I was really kind of rooting for Hayley Atwell as the next Doctor, but while I’ve never seen Jodie Whittaker in anything, she seems like a sound choice. At least she has a good relationship with the new show-runner, which was apparently one of the (many) problems with Capaldi’s tenure.

What I find tiresome is the nitwits on social media who are treating it as a victory over The Patriarchy. Reminder: when you hate half the population, you’re the bigot.


Naturally, Those Lovable Leftists hate her because she’s white. Of course, much like the deafening silence regarding the gender imbalance in the field of sewer-cleaning, I’m not seeing a lot of demands for Women Of Color to win the coveted Nazi roles in WWII movies and games. What kind of world denies a black Muslim lesbian her right to be Hitler?

Wither, BBC

(not a typo)

“One in six of all on-screen BBC roles must go to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender or disabled people by 2020, the corporation’s new diversity targets state.”

“The BBC’s royal charter, due to expire this year, is currently under Government review.”

(not a coincidence)

I’m guessing the disabled activists will be getting the short end of the stick on this one.


Ultraman Forever


Dear Jamie Zawinski,

“No, but I’d kiss his redheaded clone sisters.”

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”